Microdots to stymie chopshops

2012-03-13 22:24

Johannesburg - Amendments to the National Road Traffic Act will go a long way in fighting vehicle crime, Business Against Crime SA (Bacsa) said on Tuesday.

"The application of microdot technology to all motor vehicles will strengthen the police's ability to identify stolen or hijacked vehicles." chief executive Graham Wright said in a statement.

"These regulatory changes follow more than a decade of consistent and sustained effort by Bacsa and various parties within government and business to secure the identity of all motor vehicles."

From September 1, all vehicles registered for the first time would need to be fitted with microdots.

All vehicles requiring SA Police clearance have had to fitted with microdots since last week.

Wright said this meant that the police could now identify parts from stolen vehicles even if the vehicle has been 'chopped up' for the illegal spare parts market.

"Microdots are the most cost effective, easy to use and enduring technology available in securing and preserving the identity of a motor vehicle," he said.

Microdot technology works through the application of thousands of small polymeric or metallic discs inscribed with the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) or an agreed PIN.

These discs are applied in various locations on the vehicle through hand held, low pressure, spray systems.

Confirmation of vehicle identity is done by extracting a sample of the material and looking at it through a low powered microscope.

Once applied, the microdots are difficult to remove and serve as a lasting reminder of the original identity of the vehicle and its parts.

  • clinton.bowden1 - 2012-03-14 01:35

    I am willing to be that SA criminals will find away around this. Call me pessimistic but lets face it, they are good at what they do.

      seanpresherhughes_1 - 2012-03-14 04:58

      Probably so Clinton, usually because there is an insider assisting them - The right amount of money always talks for criminals because what they get offered is ten times more than their annual salary.

  • Leon - 2012-03-14 04:38

    The police doesn't have time to look for farm murderers, corrupt politicians or serial rapists, where are they going to get time to look at material through microscopes. Rather follow the money trail to who will be providing the microdots - a well-connected ANC cadre.

  • seanpresherhughes_1 - 2012-03-14 04:51

    Brilliant! Every step in the combatting of crime gets a thumbs-up from me!

  • seanpresherhughes_1 - 2012-03-14 05:05

    Built-in microchips could have been better, at least they wouldn't be able to b filed off, even though it would have cost more.

  • brionyl.french - 2012-03-14 05:14

    more work for lazy cops

  • Wendy - 2012-03-14 06:34

    Wonder just how difficult they will be to remove .. criminals seem to always find a way, but great that something is being done.

  • jannie.debeer - 2012-03-14 06:41

    can they attach it to rhino horn?

      S - 2012-03-14 09:28

      Brilliant idea! It should work just fine.

  • Frank - 2012-03-14 07:30

    Nissan has been using this technology since 2008. It gets put all over the body parts in different locations, not in plain sight. It's like DNA for the car. Problem is when they have to use the microdots to identify that means the car is already hacked to pieces.

  • Martin - 2012-03-14 07:43

    aaah man, i check microdots and had a whole other idea hahaha

  • Paul - 2012-03-14 07:45

    Nothing a little turpentine can't solve. When are these idiots going to realize that technology cannot be implemented without the correct control measures in place. So is the police going to be walking around with low power microscopes? lol. I think not. Most of these stolen vehicles are taken across the border into Mozambique anyway. Someone is obvious going to become rich from selling the microdots but it will definitely not be a deter ant for the chop shops.

  • Singatha - 2012-03-14 07:49

    Great idea, but come Sept 1 who's going to pay for this microdot spray,or will it be another hidden cost factored on the vehicle price(as if the CO2 tax we now pay for new cars is not enough,damn!! the motorist is easy money )?Nonetheless great idea.

  • Jamie - 2012-03-14 09:59

    Yeah, like identifying the stolen vehicles is the biggest problem in the policing. Vehicles with engine and chassis numbers intact have ended up on auctions of supposedly "unidentified" vehicles. Just because one can identify the vehicle doesn't imply that this will be used in the best interests of the (previous) owner.

  • ludlowdj - 2012-03-14 11:58

    A simple variation on the PFID system in use in the US and other western countries for years. PFID devices have been implanted in everything from Tyre's to bank cards for years, the system although flouted as an anti crime initiative is in fact the first port of call by police forces when trying to track "persons of interest" The Gauteng gantries have the capability to use PFID technology to register the details of every car that passes under them, this includes the owners details, including credit transactions, purchases etc and even linking cellphone accounts and purchases to a specific person. This technology places vast amounts of information on the movement of civilians in the hands of governments for use for either good or evil.

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